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How to Create Your Home Fire Safety Plan

Posted on 29th May 2010 @ 2:10 AM

An easy way to protect you and your family from fire in your home is for you create your own fire safety plan.

A home fire safety plan is not a legal requirement, but it is a very useful way to ensure you and all your family know what to do in the event of a fire in your home. It's also a great opportunity to look at your home with 'fire safety' in mind, so you can make sure that your home is as safe as possible.

However, clear and straightforward information on the internet on how to write a fire safety plan for your home is not easy to find. (Trust us, we've been looking!) So, the fire safety experts here at Acvark Fire have created an easy to follow guide to help protect your home from fire, the Look Smart guide.

Look Smart: Your Home Fire Safety Guide

Look Up: Smoke Alarms

If a fire breaks out in your home, you need to know about it as soon as possible. smoke alarm will detect smoke long before you'll even smell it, and will sound the alarm so you and your family can escape. Look after your smoke alarms, and they'll look after you.

  • Install at least one smoke alarm for every floor in your home, and pop them on the ceilings of hallways and landings. Also consider a heat alarm for your kitchen. A carbon monoxide detector is also vital in any home with a gas appliance or open fire

  • Test your alarms every week; press the test button to make sure they are working, and keep them free from dust

  • Change your smoke alarm battery once a year, or install 10-year battery smoke detectors and you'll never forget to change the battery

Remember the golden rule of fire safety: if in doubt, get everyone out, stay out, and call the fire brigade.

Look Around: Fire Hazards

Modern homes are designed to be as safe as possible, but the problem is, we then fill them with lots of stuff that burns easily! Take time to look around your home for potential hazards, such as:

  • Your furniture. It could be dangerous if it was made before 1988, as the foam inside releases poisonous fumes when it burns. If you've got an old sofa, treat yourself to a nice new fire resistant one

  • Your electrical connections should not be overloaded. Ideally, there should only be one electrical item plugged into each wall socket. If you've got four-way extensions all over the house, consider getting some extra sockets put in by an electrician. And remember to turn off any appliances at night - it's safer and you'll save energy too. DIY stores now sell special adaptors that allow you to turn off multiple appliances with just one remote

  • If anyone in your home is a smoker, make sure all cigarettes are properly stubbed out, empty those ashtrays, and never smoke in bed

Look Sharp: Fire Safety in Your Kitchen

Until the start of the 19th century, cooking was so dangerous that it was the second highest cause of death amongst women after childbirth! Today's kitchens are much safer, but cooking accidents still cause 50% of house fires in Jamaica. Luckily, there are easy ways to make your kitchen safer.

 

  • If you love fried food, invest in a stand-alone deep fat fryer with automatic cut-out, much safer than using an open pan

  • Pop a fire blanket beside your cooker to smother accidental pan fires or burning fat

  • Keep cloths, oven gloves and tea towels well clear of cookers, as even a hot hob with no flame can set them alight

Look Out: Fire Escape Plan

All the smoke alarms in the world will be of no use if you cannot easily escape from your home in the event of a fire. So, it's vital to work out how you and your family might escape if there was fire on your stairs, for example, or at your front door.

  • Walk around your home and work out two escape routes that do not involve your front door. Look for other ways out that are safe: back doors, garages, patio doors, and for flats, the nearest fire escape

  • Where are the keys to these other doors? Make sure there is a set of keys for the door nearby - they needn't be obvious (or within sight of a burgular's fishing rod!) but they should be accessible, such as in a top drawer, or behind a certain book

  • Consider having a fire escape ladder for upstairs. Nowadays, these are like metal rope ladders that store in a box and just hook around the window sill when needed. they are very popular

  • Walk your family through your escape routes, and agree a place where everyone will go to in the event of a fire - outside the front of the house in the road is best if possible. Make sure any route is free from obstacles; you need to be able to find your way in the dark and, possibly, in smoke too

If you do just one thing... Make sure all the family know the golden rule of fire safety: in the event of a fire, get everyone out, stay out, and call the fire brigade.

EDITH - Your New Best Friend

In the USA, they have an easy to remember phrase, EDITH, which stands for Exit Drills In The Home. It's basically a simple reminder that, to keep your family safe, you will need to practice your fire safety plan. So, get the kids to learn what the fire alarms sounds like by testing it every week. Walk those escape routes, and check the keys are in position. Clear the clutter by the back door, and check those trailing leads. Turn the TV off, not just to standby, and so on.

Fire Safety Products For Your Home

For all your home fire safety products, come to us at Fire Protection Online. We've got smoke alarms, fire blankets, CO monitors, heat alarms and fire extinguishers at discounted prices, plus other fire safety items for travel and students living away from home.

More Home Fire Safety Advice

If you are concerned about any aspect of fire safety in your home, your local fire brigade will be more than happy to help with advice. Some offer a home fire safety check service.